Speaking on The Australian’s Forward Slash Podcast, Nick Savvides, senior director of strategic business at cybersecurity firm Forcepoint, says that global news events such as COVID are perfect fodder for manipulation.
“Cybercriminals are actively trying to capitalise on the confusion that reigns in this situation,” Savvides says.
“People were getting the $750 bonus, JobKeeper and JobSeeker subsidies. Humans are reading (about it) on Facebook and Twitter, and hear snippets on the radio. It provides a great opportunity for a cyber criminal to say, ‘hey, you’re eligible for that one-off bonus the government is paying. Click here to get it’. And there’s just enough seed in someone’s mind to click on that link, fill out that form, hand over my details and then discover that I’ve been cleared out.”
Recognition from the federal government that significant investment must be made into cyber defence couldn’t have been more timely, with a recent survey showing that many firms are still not adequately prepared for cyber attacks.
A global study by the Ponemon Institute, sponsored by IBM, found that while organisations surveyed have slowly improved in their ability to plan for, detect and respond to cyberattacks during the past five years, their ability to contain an attack has declined by 13 per cent during this same period. The fifth annual Cyber Resilient Organization Report, which surveyed 3400 IT professionals from corporations across the US, India, Germany, United Kingdom, Brazil, Japan, Australia, France, Canada, ASEAN, and the Middle East, discovered that three-quarters of organisations are still reporting that their plans are either ad-hoc, applied inconsistently, or that they have no plans at all.